By Mike Stevenson
Kogi-born Nollywood actor and filmmaker, Thompson Makolo Jnr (TMJ), has said his new movie, Acholo was produced to affect a shift in the society to solving kidnapping and killing.
Makolo at the elite and media premiere of the movie at the Silverbird Galleria, Abuja, emphasised the need to address societal vices, including the roles of traditional and religious leaders.
At the end of the about one and half hour movie, audiences, including crème la crème in the Igala sociocultural group, agreed with Makolo that there was a need for a shift toward engaging and empowering youths in securing their future.
The Ejeh Olamaboro, Chief Simon Ujah, who was among the audience in the capacity film hall, said, “I felt something huge has shifted in me. The takeaway is that we will leave here to motivate the youth so that we have a meaningful future. From what you have shown, I can only tell our youth that they can become anything through hard work.”
A Senior Advocate of Nigeria, Jibrin Okutepa, urged traditional rulers in the cinema to “go home and tell our other traditional rulers to avoid being political traditional rulers.”
Acholo is another move by Makolo Jnr to champion the cause of the Igala people in the face of eroding western culture. Makolo, who in the past portrayed a story of bravery in Ona by the rivers of Lokoja delivered another blockbuster in Igala language.
Acholo tells a story of kidnapping, killing and the apparent silence of traditional and religious institutions and it went a step further by proffering a solution to this societal menace. The solution lies in the about one hour, twenty minutes movie which held the audience spellbound during its media and elite premiere in Abuja.
The adaptation of cultural approaches to solving kidnappings and killings ensured the audience left the cinema with more questions than answers as regards the efforts of the traditional institutions in guaranteeing peace and harmony in their communities.
The movie which was directed by Iyua Alaha, set in Idah in Kogi State and featured more than 50 percent up-and-coming artistes, with cast and crew drawn from Jos, Delta and Kogi states.
In attendance at the premiere were Chief Ujah Simeon, the Ejeh Olamaboro; J.S. Okutepa, SAN; Dr Idris Omede, former President, Nigeria Medical Association; Chief Inuwa Iyodo; Hajiya Salamatu Umar Eluma, former APC National Women Leader; and Rt Hon Ismail Inah, former member of House of Representatives.
Others were Mr Ikani Emmanuel Makoji of PTDF; Dr Yusuf Stephen, Prof. Dominic Abubakar Akpa of ABU, Mr Edime Amade; Dr Enema J Amodu, Chairman NMA FCT branch, among other eminent Nigerians.